Freedom Industries issued five notices of violation for Poca fac - Business, Government Legal News from throughout WV

Freedom Industries moving materials from its second site in Nitro

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UPDATE:

According to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, Freedom Industries has started the process of transferring MCHM and other chemical spill-related materials from its second facility to adjacent property being leased by Freedom Industries.

The company informed the DEP Jan. 3 it would begin shipping materials from its Nitro site, Poca Blending. Freedom was scheduled to transfer 3,500 gallons of MCHM from an inventory that was already stored at Poca Blending before the Jan. 9 chemical leak at Freedom's Etowah Terminal facility on the Elk River to a coal facility in Pennsylvania, according to the DEP.

Freedom Industries indicated to the DEP that it would continue shipping MCHM from its Poca Blending facility to its customers throughout the "next several days and weeks," and the shipments will include MCHM that had been transferred to Poca Blending in Nitro from the Elk River spill site as well as MCHM that had already been stored in Nitro.

The WVDEP announced it would have inspectors at the company's site as Freedom unloads tanks and transfers the materials and there would be potential for area residents to detect odors of the chemical, but the WVDEP "will closely monitor the activity to ensure that it is done safely and with as minimal of an odor impact as possible."

 

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UPDATE:

According to a spokesman from DEP, Freedom Industries has been issued five notices of violations for its Poca facility.

The Poca facility is where MCHM was stored following the spill in Charleston, WV on Jan. 9.   According to the DEP, the major concern is "unsatisfactory secondary containment" at the facility.

To read the full report click here.

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ORGINAL:

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Water and Waste Management announced at 8:15 p.m. Jan. 10 it now is requiring Freedom Industries to remove the contents of its 11 remaining above-ground storage tanks at its Etowah Terminal in Charleston.

(FREEDOM INDUSTRIES BREAKS SILENCE: DOESN'T KNOW HOW SPILL HAPPENED)

The contents of the plant's remaining three tanks, which includes the one that leaked into the Elk River Jan. 9, contaminating the water for more than 100,000 homes in nine Southern West Virginia County, have already been removed and relocated to another facility. All thee tanks contained 4-Methylcyclohexane Methanol, or MCHM, the chemical that leaded into the Elk River.

The WVDEP issued a Cease Operations Order to Freedom Industries earlier in the day Jan. 10. The DEP's Division of Air Quality also issued a Notice of Violation to Freedom for causing statutory air pollution by discharging MCHM into the air, and both prior orders are still in effect.

The most recent order requires Freedom Industries to remove all material from above-ground storage tanks within 24 hours and then store the material in an off-site area that provides adequate secondary containment.

The company also must submit approval for an appropriate plan of corrective action within 24 hours that, at a minimum, must include a detailed plan to appropriately implement a remediation of all contaminated soil and/or groundwater as well as a plan and a schedule for the ultimate disposition of the products stored in the tanks.

The WVDEP continued its investigation of the release of MCHM from Freedom Industries, and documented several observations, including:

 

  • In addition to the three above-ground storage tanks containing MCHM, 11 additional tanks were reported inside the same failed secondary containment area in which the MCHM leaked
  • The other materials being stored in the additional tanks included Calcium Chloride and Glycerin
  • Freedom Industries has removed most of the MDHM from the above-ground storage tanks and staged it in four large Baker tanks off-site at its other facility, Poca Blending LLC.

Find the latest updates on our dedicated water crisis page by clicking here.

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